Greenebaum donation, Grammy winners, Frank Robinson and a couple Valentine’s Day surprises

Michael Greenebaum

Michael Greenebaum: (Courtesy photo)

Greenebaum Family Foundation Donates $8M to McDonogh School

Michael Greenebaum, on behalf of the Stewart and Marlene Greenebaum Family Foundation, recently pledged $8 million toward the construction of a new middle school building at McDonogh School in Owings Mills. The gift comes with a challenge to the greater McDonogh community to raise the remaining $17 million for the project. It is the second largest philanthropic gift in the school’s history, said David J. Farace, MdDonogh’s head of school. Michael Greenebaum is a McDonogh trustee and parent. His father, Stewart, died on Dec. 10, 2017, and his mother, Marlene, passed away on Dec. 23, 2018. The Greenebaums were noted Baltmore philanthropists and community leaders.

Read more: Greenebaum Family Foundation Donates $8 Million to McDonogh School

Baltimore police car

Baltimore police car (Handout photo)

Acting Baltimore Police Commissioner Introduces Himself

The Michael Harrison era for the Baltimore Police Department has begun. At an introductory press conference Feb. 11, the 28-year veteran of the New Orleans Police Department said his first priority now that he’s settled into Baltimore is to listen – to both residents, and to BPD’s rank and file – about what is most needed to improve policing in Baltimore and repair the ailing relationships between cops and communities, according to Baltimore Fishbowl. Harrison said he plans to “make sure we can build relationships that were never built, improve on good relationships, and certainly repair bad relationships — because it will always be about relationships, and it is the one way that we will make Baltimore a great police department, make Baltimore a great city.” Mayor Catherine Pugh introduced Harrison at City Hall, flanked by City Council members and administration officials.

Read more: New top cop Michael Harrison introduces himself to Baltimore

The late, great Frank Robinson (Courtesy of Sports Legends)

Remembering Frank Robinson

It’s an unfortunate oversight that we now laud Frank Robinson’s accomplishments on the baseball field while we slip silently around the era in which he played and the historical obstacles he faced, Michael Olesker writes. Robinson goes to his grave, at 83, with justifiable tributes pouring in. He was the greatest player in all the years of modern Orioles baseball, which now approaches two-thirds of a century. When he arrived in Baltimore from Cincinnati in 1966, and thereafter led the team to four World Series appearances in six years, he was also one of the only African-American players of importance the club had ever employed. This was nearly 20 years since Jackie Robinson had integrated major league baseball. It was a dozen years since the Orioles had returned to the big leagues. One year, 1955, manager Paul Richards shuffled 54 players on and off the roster in a frenzied attempt to win a few games. Every one of the 54 was white. They went through 10 different third basemen that year, all white.

Read more: Frank Robinson’s Death Serves as Reminder of Baltimore’s Racial Legacy

Guggenheim protesters call on museum to reject Sackler donations 

Demonstrators protested in front of the Guggenheim Museum in New York against its major donors, the Sackler family. Some members of the family have been accused of directing their pharmaceutical firm, Purdue Pharma, to mislead doctors and patients about the dangers of the opioid painkiller OxyContin produced by the company. The protest was led by a group founded by the Jewish activist and photographer Nan Goldin, The Associated Press reported. The group is calling on museums to refuse donations from Sackler family members over its contribution to the opioid crisis. The protesters dropped thousands of fake prescriptions for OxyContin into the museum’s main atrium that read “Sacklers lie. People die,” “Shame on Sackler” and “Take down the name.” The museum’s Sackler Center for Arts Education was built with funding from the family. Arthur Sackler’s name appears on the building; he died before OxyContin was released. Sackler’s brothers, Raymond and Mortimer, bought out his stake after his death. The family has supported Tel Aviv University’s School of Medicine and the Jewish Museum in Berlin.

Read more: Guggenheim protesters call on museum to reject Sackler donations over opioid addiction

'The Band's Visit'

Rachel Prather, Etai Benson and Ariel Stachel in “The Band’s Visit” (Photo by Matt Murphy, 2017)

‘The Band’s Visit,’ Drake win Grammy Awards

“The Band’s Visit,” the Tony Award-winning musical set in an Israeli village, added a Grammy Award to its list of accolades and Jewish rapper Drake also won a Grammy for best rap song. The musical, which is based on a 2007 Israeli film, won for best musical theater album during the live award presentation on Feb. 10.  Drake won for “God’s Plan,” but it was his only award out of seven nominations. The Canadian singer and former day school student has won a total of four Grammys among 34 nominations. In his acceptance speech, Drake offered a veiled criticism of the Grammys — and was cut off before finishing. “We play in an opinion-based sport, not a factual-based sport,” he said. “You’ve already won if you have people who are singing your songs word for word, if you’re a hero in your hometown.” Indie songstress St. Vincent won the Grammy for best rock song for “Masseduction.” It was co-written by Jack Antonoff, who is Lena Dunham’s ex-boyfriend and has also written songs with Taylor Swift and Lorde. Antonoff is a graduate of the Solomon Schechter Day School of Bergen County, N.J. Lady Gaga’s “Shallow” from “A Star Is Born” won the award for best song written for visual media. The actress and singer shared the honor with co-writers Mark Ronson, Andrew Wyatt and Anthony Rossomando. Ronson, a leading producer of pop music, had a bar mitzvah. – JTA

Lena Headey

Lena Headey at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, Jan. 28, 2019. (Rich Fury/Getty Images)

Lena Headey to star in Israeli horror flick

Lena Headey, the English actress best known for portraying the diabolical ruler Cersei Lannister on “Game of Thrones,” is going to star in an Israeli film. Headey, 45, will have a major role in “Gunpowder Milkshake,” which was written and will be directed by Israelis Aharon Keshales and Navot Papushado. Karen Gillan, who has appeared in “Avengers: Infinity War,” “Doctor Who” and “Guardians of the Galaxy,” also has signed on to the film. Quentin Tarantino, whose wife is the Israeli singer Daniela Pick, called Keshales and Papushado’s 2013 film “Big Bad Wolves” the best film of the year, according to Haaretz. – JTA



The Bizarre World of Frank Zappa

The Bizarre World of Frank Zappa (Handout photo)

Zappa lives?

Frank Zappa, the Baltimore native and pioneer of boundary-pushing experimental rock music, is back in hologram form, according to Baltimore Fishbowl. The vocalist and guitarist, dead since 1993, will appear on stage at the Modell Lyric Performing Arts Center on May 3 as a projection that plays music alongside frequent collaborators guitarists Ray White and Mike Keneally, bassist Scott Thunes, multi-instrumentalist Robert Martin and percussionist Ed Mann. Rounding out the lineup are drummer and Zappa archivist Joe “Vaultmeister” Travers. Known as The Bizarre World of Frank Zappa, the show is possible thanks to hologram technology by the production company Eyellusion, which counts one of Zappa’s children, Ahmet Zappa, as its executive vice president of business development. Tickets go on sale this Friday at 10 a.m. through Ticketmaster.

Read more: Frank Zappa is returning to Baltimore as a hologram

OH Intimacy Oil

OH Intimacy Oil (Image courtesy Curio Wellness)

OH My!

Timonium’s Curio Wellness has launched a new product called OH Intimacy Oil — a first for the Maryland cannabis market and it could make for a happy Valentine’s Day. It’s a natural, vegan, paraben-free THC intimacy oil intended to boost arousal and increase relaxation. One thing to keep in mind — it’s not compatible with condoms or other latex birth control products. Find out more at  (You must be 21 and older and this site is definitely not SFW.)



Bonus item: Watch Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman get his beard shaved on “Ellen”

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